Energy Conservation & Renewable Energy
Tackling energy use is a win-win proposition: it reduces our environmental impact and makes good business sense.
By building more energy-efficient stores and facilities, conserving the energy and water we use and purchasing renewable energy credits, we are pushing ourselves to reduce the environmental footprint of our business operations. It is our goal to reduce our energy consumption by 25% and to cover 100% of our electricity consumption with renewable energy by 2015.
2013 Report Update
To learn more about our work in reducing energy consumption read our Global Responsibility Goals & Progress Report.
In 2008 we set a goal to reduce electricity use by 25% in all company-operated stores. Since then we’ve implemented a number of initiatives and have seen our electricity use decrease 7.06% from the 2008 baseline. Our performance in 2013 was a slight improvement from 2012, which included an increase in food transactions and oven use in stores across the United States. Due to the expansion of our business in food and beverage offerings, we are currently evaluating the changes to our stores’ energy demand and how we measure and monitor efficiency improvements.
Although we are pleased to see our electricity use decrease, we need to continue to make improvements and innovate new solutions in order to further our goal of improving the energy performance of our stores. We are trying to balance the quality of the customer experience with energy conservation. For instance, the addition of heated food to our offerings has required an increase in refrigeration and ovens, often offsetting a portion of the gains from our existing energy efficiency measures. We are evaluating and implementing new strategies that help reduce energy use and meet our environmental performance targets, such as adding Energy Management Systems, that drive our suppliers to provide equipment that operates at leading-edge efficiency levels.
Investing in Renewable Energy
In addition to reducing our energy use, we’re increasingly focused on advancing renewable energy sources through our purchasing practices. In 2008 we set the goal to purchase Green-E certified Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) equivalent to 50% of the electricity used in our U.S. and Canada company-operated stores. We achieved that goal in 2010, so in 2011 we began working toward a goal to purchase the equivalent of 100% of the electricity used in our company-operated stores globally by 2015. The RECs we purchase encourage the development of new clean-energy sources by providing wind-farm owners with additional revenue. In turn that helps them sell electricity at prices competitive with power plants that use fossil fuels.
2013 Report Update
To learn more about our work in investing in renewable energy read our Global Responsibility Goals & Progress Report.
In 2013 we increased our renewable energy certificate purchases 7.6% over 2012 levels, equivalent to 54.9% of the electricity used in our stores globally. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has named us among the top 10 purchasers of renewable energy in the country.
While we have applied RECs to our total global energy footprint, they are designed to spur development of the U.S. renewable energy market. As we continue to grow internationally, we are working with our regional teams to identify locally relevant energy sources that help increase our global investment in renewable energy.